Painted Ladies

Mark Walker mwalker at
Fri Aug 15 07:02:18 EDT 1997

> > Has there been a general fall in the number of Painted Ladies this
year. I
> > haven't had any on my Buddliea at all, this year.

Don't mind if I just jump right into this thread (from the other side of
the pond), but speaking of Painted Ladies...

Now that I've spent a full year in Vermont, I've been a little surprised by
the absence of Vanessa anything, except for atalanta, which has been
relatively common since May.  No shortage of thistle here, but no Painted
Ladies.  In California, I was quite used to several prolific broods each
year.  Not uncommon to see V. cardui, V. annabella or V. virginiensis, with
cardui and virginiensis sometimes numbering in the hundreds in a single

I haven't seen 5 since I've been in Vermont (maybe not 3).  And believe me,
I've spent nearly every non-frozen moment looking.  Is this normal?  Are
the Vanessa migrants this far north?  Is it a bad year?

Actually, it hasn't been a very good Lep summer in general.  It all started
with a late spring.  Spring species didn't start flying until June (over a
month late).  I'm still waiting for a summer surge.  I think they're going
to take the rest of the year off.  I guess when you used to sleeping so
much, it's easy to justify pushing the snooze button...

Where am I going with this?  I have no idea.

Mark Walker
Castleton, VT

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